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Chattisgarh: Centre seeks report on jailbreak
December 17, 2007 19:14 IST
The Union Home Ministry on Monday sought a detailed report from the Chattisgarh government on the daring escape by 299 inmates of the state's Dantewada jail.
"The Home ministry has asked for a detailed report and directed the state government to beef up security and surveillance in and around jails in Chattisgarh," a spokesman said.
In a planned action, 299 inmates of Dantewada jail had escaped yesterday after overpowering the prison guards.
Union home secretary Madhukar Gupta spoke to the state police chief about the jailbreak and suggested tighter measures in and around jails to prevent such incidents in future.
The jailbreak came barely two days after the meeting of the Naxal taskforce in Bhubaneswar on December 13 and 14, where the issue of providing more security in jails had figured prominently.
The Naxal-hit states were advised to use night-vision devices and make better lighting arrangements in and around jails after the Jehanabad jailbreak in Bihar two years ago when 341 prisoners were freed.
Sources said the state government authorities have been asked to increase manpower in jails and provide better training to jail staff besides installing latest gadgets to keep a tab on the activities of jail inmates.
The home secretary had written to all states in September this year on the need to increase security in prisons and address the problem of overcrowding.
In his letter to the state governments, Gupta had also mentioned about the need for implementation of prison reforms. The Centre provides funds to state governments for modernisation of prisoners.
The home minister also drew the attention of chief ministers to reports about prisoners having prohibited items in jails.
He had also mentioned reports that terrorists and criminals in jails were networking with their accomplices outside the jail premises.
The MHA has been sending advisories to states from time to time asking them to tighten security in jails by giving priority to monitoring at the highest level so that there was no dereliction of duty by the jail staff, sources said.